UK car sales continue downward trend

| March 10, 2011 | 0 Comments

The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) has revealed UK car sales fell by 7.7% in February compared with the same month in 2010.

However, traditionally February is a quiet month for the car industry, with many waiting for the new number plate in March.

The continuous fall in sales was expected due to the withdrawal of the scrappage scheme.

The SMMT said the number of new cars sold in the month was 63,424 - representing the eighth consecutive monthly fall in sales.

However, the SMMT forecast a fall in sales in the first half of 2011 but expects demand to strengthen in the second half.

Commenting on the figures, SMMT chief executive Paul Everitt said: “The UK motor industry is looking for a strong March market to help boost confidence and kick-start demand for the new 11-plate.

“February new car registrations were better than expected and while below 2010 levels, they were significantly ahead of 2009 and on an improving trend,” he added.

Meanwhile, fleet volumes improved in February by 8.6% but private demand continued to weaken, said the SMMT.

With fuel prices soaring, demand for diesel cars rose by 8.9% last month.

The SMMT is urging the Government to consider freezing fuel duty, while “providing stability and certainty on motoring taxes” in this month’s budget.

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